Do you have a sweet tooth that’s got addicted to sugar? Highly addictive and capable of impacting your health adversely, sugar leads to obesity and a spate of other health issues. It can even increase your risk of cancer. This is certainly bad news in the face of packaged foods, fast food items, high-calorie food items, sweets and confectionery, and other sugar-rich food making it to your list every day. Read on to find your way out of the sugary maze by adopting helpful alternatives to sugar.
What’s your Daily Sugar Requirement?
According to a study report by the World Health Organization (WHO), no more than 50 g of sugar (12 teaspoons) should be consumed on a daily basis. Almost all of us end up eating much more sugar than this in various forms. So, what’s the best way of weaning yourself away from sugar and its bad effects on your health? The answer lies in the healthy alternatives to sugar – stevia, honey, jaggery, xylitol, and other organically grown sweeteners – that bring back your health with their regular usage.
Healthy Alternatives to Replace Sugar
You will want to keep away your sugar jar forever after knowing the goodness of the natural sweeteners given below. They take care of your need for sugar and replace the same with natural compositions that don’t harm your body in any way, and these alternatives to sugar can be purchased online or from a store near you. Once you try out different options, you’ll find it easy to handle the challenges of obesity, lethargy, blood sugar issues, and the general health concerns caused by sugar.
1. Birch Sugar
Birch sugar is industrially manufactured by using hydrolyzing xylan (hemicellulose) that are processed into xylose. Further processing changes xylose to xylitol. A type of sugar-based alcohol, Xylitol (E 967) serves as an excellent substitute for sugar.
Marketed as birch sugar, xylitol comprises of vegetables and fruits, such as cauliflower, plums, berries, and more – these are things that you consider healthy and capable of adding to your dietary regime.
The process of manufacturing birch sugar is cumbersome and expensive. Given this, it is common to find manufacturers shifting to corn cobs for producing birch sugar.
Supplying 40% fewer calories than regular refined sugar, birch sugar keeps blood sugar in control and does not lead to cavities.
What’s more? It has the same sweetening effect of sugar!
Honey, a storehouse of valuable nutrients, is a natural product and one of the most popular sweeteners in the world. The bees that collect flower nectar, and break the same down to simple sugar to store in honeycombs, have been around since ages. In fact, honey can be rated as being the oldest alternative to sugar in today’s date. It has been around for ages and has also been used in the form of a healing agent by natural medicine practitioners.
Honey offers anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and strong antiseptic properties. It can be added to cereals, salads, milk, and a host of food items in lieu of refined sugar.
It reduces several health risk factors, especially with regards to cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes. For instance, it reduces triglycerides, ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol, and inflammation. It increases the level of ‘good’ HDL cholesterol.
Though honey does not succeed in saving you many calories in comparison to your normal intake of sugar, it scores more because of its other health benefits. Eating honey in moderate quantities makes it work as a helpful alternative to sugar.
Steviol glycoside, which is extracted from Stevia Rebaundiana, a South American plant species, is fast replacing sugar in commercial and domestic use alike. Stevia has zero calories! This makes stevia an excellent alternative to sugar, especially for diabetic patients.
Stevia is very sweet. It is 300-400 timers sweeter than processed sugar. On a lighter note, it is bitterly sweet.
Including stevia in your diet reduces the risks for cancer, heart diseases, and several age-related disorders.
Say ‘No’ to Sugar
These healthy alternatives to sugar are not passing lifestyle fads. They have been benefiting users since generations and are here to stay. It is common to see them touted as being far superior to sugar, which they actually are. It’s best to use sugar supplements with chemical compounds in light quantities and after consulting your health care specialists. Alternatively, start cutting back on sweeteners altogether. Try asking yourself today, “Do I really need to sweeten my coffee or tea?”